Back to School Time! How to Survive and Triumph This Year

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It’s “Back to School” time. Are you ready?

Last Friday night we attended the Back-to-School meeting to learn about what to expect for the upcoming year. While I love our school and I am very happy with the teachers, I still don’t have my head around the fact that school starts on Tuesday.

Based on my Back-to-School performance the past few weeks, I am clearly not ready to jump back into the swing of things.

We aren’t even officially back to school and already I am messing up.

 I ordered the wrong uniform skirts online. Not only that, but I just returned another set of skirts to JC Penney that were too big, only to realize I am going to have to repurchase those same size skirts again as the next size down is too short in length.

And now it’s too late to get the repurchased skirts altered in time for the first week back at school. Luckily we have a few other pieces that will work in the interim.

Like, two. To be exact.

Just this morning I remembered that we still don’t have new socks. I’m pretty sure the dryer ate the old socks from last year. So I’m in a bind.

I only buy knee socks at Target, because I have purchased knee socks from a few other places that ended up being too big, even though I went by the sizing on the package. So, any that I have purchased outside of Target end up looking like thigh highs, which is clearly not the look we are going for here.

I don’t do returns. I hate returns. Therefore, I tend not to branch out when buying my child’s clothing. I go with what I know works.

The Target socks work. Incidentally, Target is almost always out of the size we need.

I have yet to buy a new lunch box. Why? No good reason, other than I am busy and I forgot.

Oh, and I guess we’ll need food for the lunch box, which means grocery shopping. Thank you, Walmart.com online grocery shopping. What would I do without you?

We still need a new back pack. (This year I am putting my foot down, refusing to let my daughter continue to carry her dad’s satchel-style diaper bag from her baby days … no matter how much she begs.) Fortunately, one of the grandmas offered to take Ivy shopping for one on Monday.

I Am Flunking at “Back to School”

Sitting at the back-to-school meeting and listening to the teachers outline expectations, I quickly realized this was a whole new ballgame for not only our daughter, but us as parents.

I might be a little scared.

With second grade comes more responsibility, obviously. More charts, more homework, more things to remember.  Read: More stress for me.

Jesus, take the wheel.

Follow-through is a challenge around here. We tend to fly by the seat of our pants. Also, we are easily distracted.

Still, I refuse to give up. Second grade won’t get the best of us. Yes, I see some tough weeks ahead, but today, I decided to set some Back-to-School ground rules for a happier, healthier year in our home.

Back to School: How to Survive and Thrive This School Year

I will chill out.

It’s second grade, not her senior year. Yes, it’s an important year for learning to be more responsible. But she’s going to make mistakes and so am I. When we make mistakes, we will learn from them.

I will not compare myself to other moms.

I will not beat myself up when it feels like I’m not measuring up or doing enough. Especially on dinners. And crafts. Or activities. Also “amazing surprises”. Christmas. Birthdays. And pretty much everything.

I will remember that I am not perfect.

Not only am I not perfect, but my daughter is not perfect, and our family is not perfect. No one is perfect and so I will not compare us to anyone else and what seems to be a “perfect” performance and life.

I will exercise more patience.

Especially during the math homework. Mostly during the math homework.

I will forgive myself when I do lose my patience.

Because it will happen. When it does, I will hug my daughter or my husband (or myself) and apologize, and ask them to please be patient with me.

I will let my daughter be herself.

Yes, I will continue to encourage her spunky, individual spirit and fight the urge I sometimes have to worry about what others might think.

I will not over-commit.

I repeat. I will not over-commit myself or my people with obligations or activities, and I won’t feel guilty or question my choices.

I will practice self-care.

I will take time for myself on a regular basis. 

I will laugh more and worry less.

I will look for the little blessings which are often the biggest blessings, and I will practice gratitude.

I will slow down and enjoy this year.

It goes by so fast and I refuse to let outside factors and life in general keep me from savoring these precious days.

……

Ten simple rules. Just ten mindful guidelines for managing the upcoming school year.

How do you plan to manage the overwhelm of getting back into the swing of Back to School? Leave a comment and let us know!

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